Santa Clara, CAAn $8 million settlement has been reached in a qui tam lawsuit brought against Omnicare Inc, a subsidiary of CVS Health Corp, by The US Department of Justice and 28 states. The whistleblower lawsuit alleged the defendants violated the False Claim Act by incorrectly labeling generic drugs. The labeling procedure enabled claims to be made to Medicare and Medicaid for generic drug prescriptions under different National Drug Codes than those of the actual drugs given, and for the drug labels to be given with incorrect information.
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The lawsuit was brought based on evidence from two whistleblowers, Elizabeth Corsi and Christopher Ezzie, who in February 2014, claimed that Omnicare used an automated label verification system that caused some generic drugs to be prescribed under a different identification number than the one on the prescription and thus be billed to the government. As part of the settlement, Corsi and Ezzie will receive $2 million.
According to court documents, the alleged false claims were made between January 2008 and December 2014 at Omnicare facilities across the country, including its primary pharmacy in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania.
Several other claims, relating to other alleged violations of state law will also be settled as separate agreements, totalling at least $584,643, plus interest accrued from late October 2016.
The case is US et al. ex rel. Elizabeth Corsi and Christopher Ezzie v. Omnicare Inc., case number 1:14-cv-01136-JEI-JS, in the US District Court for the District of New Jersey.